SOOO, I guess I touched off a hot topic yesterday, and I didn't even mean to. Teenage babysitting. Is it good or is it bad? Well, apparently "anonymous" thinks it's bad. AND, do you leave kids home when they're kinda sick? Good or bad.
Jimmy has been sick for 2 days. VERY low fever, laying on the couch, no puking. Just puny. Content to watch TV. Loss of appetite. Hence the no puking. Sleepy a lot. I've been giving him Motrin or Tylenol, and he returns to almost normal. No complaints about anything else. His throat was a bit swollen on the inside, but seriously, the child has the LARGEST tonsils that I've seen, and snores horribly. So it didn't look any different than normal.
So I left him at home with Jake a few times. And went about life as normal. Was this bad? He wasn't overly whiny or clingy. He was just content to lay on the couch and watch TV. I was in contact with Jake by phone. And it's not like I left him alone for an 8 hour stretch. Friday, I was gone for about 30 minutes in the morning, then home till lunch. Then gone from lunch till about the time kids got home from school. Enough time for an hour or so at Hilarys house, a Sonic run ,and a trip to Old Navy. Then I was home for after school time, dinner, and I left again at almost bedtime.
Each time I was there, I was sitting with Jimmy, or doing chores. He didn't seem to care either way. He was watching movies. Or sleeping. Mostly he was sleeping. I'd give him meds every 4 hours, and gatorade, and saltine crackers. I knew exactly what was going on.
Jake would text about every hour when I was gone, and he would let me know how things were going. Jimmy is napping. Jimmy is watching a movie. I gave him more gatorade. He doesn't wanna eat the crackers.
The kids were all watching a movie when Captain America and I headed out on our date at almost 7pm. Jimmy, again, was laying on the couch, watching a movie, with his brothers and sister. At 8pm, Jake put Jim to bed, and he fell asleep.
We got home at 11:30pm, and Jimmy was in the bathroom peeing. And then he puked. But nothing came out, because he hadn't eaten anything. I gave him more liquids, some more meds, and set him up on the couch with a pillow and blanket, tucked him in, and he went right back to sleep. It was the only time he'd puked.
To me, this sounded like the flu. Or teething. Or something common, not treatable with much more than Tylenol and rest. I have 5 kids, so unless there's something more than a fever, no doctor is needed. Just time.
Which is why I didn't feel the need to sit home and monitor his every movement. Warning signs in my book are puking (and then only sometimes), headaches, sore throats, ouchy ears, asthma-like breathing, those kinds of things. Not fevers. Especially low fevers.
SO, Saturday morning, Captain America and I both had a meeting to go to. We volunteer for Cub Scouts in the church AND Cub Scouts in the community. We were doing our Annual Planning meeting for the Community pack, and it was a family picnic.
Since Jimmy was puny, and the weather was supposed to be over 100 degrees (it was 105, I think), I left him and Jake at home. Jake didn't wanna go anyway. I told him I'd bring him back a plate of food, and he was fine. Jim still had the same symptoms as yesterday and the day before.
BUT, while at the meeting, around lunchtime, Jake texted and said that Jimmy said that his ears were hurting. OK, warning sign.
We finished up within the hour, and I came home, got kids situated, and took Jimmy to the ER. You don't bring your otherwise healthy child to the ER for a low fever. But you do for a low fever combined with earache.
We got there at 2pm, and got seen right away. He had a fever of 100.1, and was drowzy. Maybe this is a bad thing, but before I take my kids to the ER, I don't medicate them. Whats the point of going to the doctor when they can't see the problem. So he hadn't had any meds since 8am. So the nurse gave him some Motrin, and we waited for a few more minutes.
Really, it was a super fast visit. We were seen within 20 minutes. They looked in his ears, and said that he had ear infections in both ears. Then they looked in his throat, and did a Strep test. Strep was positive. Right after the strep test, he was crying (cause they shoved that stick down his throat), and I went and held him on the bed, and he puked all over me. Nice. Pedialite and Watermelon slushie from Sonic. Wonderful. hehehe.
After that, he felt SO much better. He wanted to get up and play with the spinny stool/chair, and acted like a new kid. We got our prescription, signed a few papers, went to the pharmacy right there in the hospital, and only had to wait for 2 people in front of us.
We were walking out of the hospital by 3:30. Yeah, record time. I gave him his first dose of Penicillin, and took him home.
So tell me, was I an irresponsible parent as "anonymous" implied? Is it bad to leave a little one home with a sibling when they're sick, even if you're monitoring them the entire time? And if so, why? I only took Jimmy to the ER AFTER I found out about his ear. He hadn't mentioned a sore throat, or earaches before that. How does me staying home all day yesterday tell me that? All the time I spent with him yesterday, he didn't say a thing about it. Or mention it to Jake. Or Captain America. Or anyone else. I'm not omniscient, you know :)
Anyway, while I feel I did nothing "wrong", anonymous' comment has been in my head today. I don't really feel like blogging the rest of the day. Someone is just gonna take offense at it anyway, right? Pick apart everything that I do. Comment on how much of a bad parent I must be for whatever it is I choose to do.
I use my blog as my journal. To chronicle my "journey" through my days. And if I have to "guard" what I write, for fear of being looked at as a "bad parent", well, then, it's kinda losing it's appeal. Hopefully I'll feel different tomorrow. Because I love tying up my day by blogging. After a long day of activities, it's a nice 30 minutes to an hour that I sit and reflect on what I really did for the day. Positives and negatives. It gives me pause to organize my thoughts. And see what all I really did accomplish.
But I guess this is what I get for putting my life in the public eye, right? I open myself up to scrutiny.....
Anyway, here's a freebie. I hope you like it :) Even if I am a bad parent, at least I make nice WordArts, right?